Guest Post: Connecting in a Dusty, Used Book Store, by Jennifer Slattery

Connecting in a Dusty, Used Book Store

by Jennifer Slattery

Jennifer SlatteryMy husband and I are newly empty nesters, and that’s been an adjustment. Actually, considering he, our daughter, and I are all introverts who largely stay to ourselves, I’ve been surprised at what an adjustment this new phase has been. There’s just something about having those you love around, right? Whether they say a word or not? Needless to say, our daughter’s recent absence has been felt.

Man, do I miss her! But I try not to push, not to guilt her into seeing me, because I truly want her to launch from our nest and embrace her new life at college. So, when I learned her schedule would be relatively light one Thursday a few weeks ago, I sent her a text.

Me: Want to meet for lunch?

She proceeded to tell me her schedule. We could meet before or after a couple of her classes, but she’d have to be back by 4.

Honestly, I would’ve been pleased with thirty minutes, or even a quick phone call, so I was more than thrilled with the chunk of time she offered. But I still wanted to give her an out, just in case.

So I shot her another text: Are you sure you have time? I don’t want to make you feel stressed.

(College can be crazy tough, and I certainly don’t want to be an additional stresser!)

My heart swelled at her response: Nah.

That’s young adult talk for, “I want to see you.”

At least that’s how I chose to interpret it.

The events that followed were absolutely precious. I parked outside her dorm, and, upon her suggestion, the two of us walked toward Lincoln’s historic Haymarket so she could show me a used bookstore, one of two she’d found.

Jennifer Slattery and her daughter, in the used book store

And had we ended there, the entire day would’ve been awesome. Because there’s just something about books, right? Especially about going to a bookstore with the child you remember reading to, all those years ago, and perusing shelves filled with books from printed during that period of time.

It was our special connection, and a memory I won’t soon forget. The rest of our day was great, filled with getting lost, laughing, talking, and, of course, eating, but that bookstore was the highlight, and not just because it was cute and quaint and homey, but because through it, I was reminded of a special connection my daughter and I shared, one we’ve shared since before she could talk, and that’s our love for stories.

If you’re reading this blog, I’m assuming there’s a good chance you’re a book lover. Do you have any memorable bookstore moments you can share, maybe of going to the bookstore with your parents or taking your child or grandchild to one and spending a lazy afternoon flipping through crisp pages? Share your memories with us in the comments below!


Jennifer Slattery writes soul-stirring fiction for New Hope Publishers, a publishing house passionate about bringing God’s healing grace and truth to the hopeless. She also writes for, Internet Café Devotions, and the group blog, Faith-filled Friends. When not writing, Jennifer loves going on mall dates with her adult daughter and coffee dates with her hilariously fun husband.

Visit with Jennifer online at and connect with her on Facebook.

Intertwined, by Jennifer Slattery

Abandoned by her husband for another woman, Tammy Kuhn, an organ procurement coordinator often finds herself in tense and bitter moments. After an altercation with a doctor, she is fighting to keep her job and her sanity when one late night she encounters her old flame Nick. She walks right into his moment of facing an unthinkable tragedy. Because they both have learned to find eternal purposes in every event and encounter, it doesn’t take long to discover that their lives are intertwined but the ICU is no place for romance… or is it? Could this be where life begins again?

Intertwined, part of New Hope Publisher’s contemporary fiction line, is a great reminder of how God can turn our greatest tragedies and failures into beautiful acts of love and grace. Readers will fall in love with the realistic characters and enjoy the combination of depth, heart-felt emotion and humor that makes Jennifer’s novels so appealing. Readers will be inspired to find God in every moment and encounter in their own lives!

Buy it:

6 thoughts on “Guest Post: Connecting in a Dusty, Used Book Store, by Jennifer Slattery

  1. Robin Bunting

    When our daughter, Paddee, was little, I used to take her to Toad Hall in Austin, TX. There, the touch with your eyes only was NOT in effect. We loved touching and dipping into the children’s section. Wonderful times. 🙂

    1. Jennifer Slattery

      What a special memory, Robin! I’ve been to Austin before but not that bookstore. Now I wish I’d known about Toad Hall! I’ll have to try to get back there and visit the store. Then I’ll take a picture and will tag you on Facebook with it! 🙂

      Thanks for stopping in to say hi and share your sweet memory with us!

  2. Janis Cox (@AuthorJanisCox)

    It is so good to connect with you. And great that you have a book published. I am so excited for you. I hope you remember me.
    A memory of a time in a bookstore… When I first became a true follower of Jesus – I haunted the church library and bookstores. When we moved for the winter to Arizona I wanted some of those treasured books but didn’t want to pay top price – so I prayed to find them in the used bookstores. I have found Oswald Chambers, and others as I prayed to find them.

    1. Janet Sketchley Post author

      Used book stores can be such treasure troves, Janis! Jennifer has a few books out now… what number is this? Three? I still have her first one in my Kindle to-read stash (along with way too many others). Thanks for sharing your book store story!

  3. Janet Sketchley Post author

    Jennifer, thanks for sharing this special day with your daughter, and I pray you’ll have many more moments to enjoy together. I just realized I haven’t added my own book store memory. At first I just thought of the sense of wonder and anticipation when you walk into this dusty store crammed with books… a treat in itself, when there’s time to wander the aisles. But there’s a particular store in the Halifax area, John W. Doull’s. They’ve moved now, closer to me (yay) but it means they’ve left behind a creative layout with winding aisles and cul-de-sacs that was so complicated they posted maps… like the London Underground maps (or subway maps in larger North American cities). Each “line” was a different colour and a different genre. I loved it. They had a good Christian fiction section, too, which is rare around here. Best, best, best part of the store was the secret door. One day I was sitting browsing through a book on writing when suddenly a section of the bookshelf swung toward me. When I got over being startled, I was so impressed to learn this was their way into the employee section of the store… carefully concealed in the shelving.


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